Treasuring the Noor of Allah swt

[Following is a transcription(not word-by-word) of the talk delivered by Shaykh Kamaluddin Ahmed db 29th August, 2014 – listen to the audio]

فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ

“…indeed I am near.” [2:186]

Allah (swt), in Quran, gave us a tremendous gift. He announced to us:

فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ

“…indeed I am near.” [2:186]

That I’m intimately near to you

Allah (swt) didn’t have to do this. He is our Khaliq, our Malik – He could’ve said I created you, I Put you on Earth, I Sent you Quran, I Sent you Nabi-e-Karim saw – now, you have hidaya, now I’ll Deal with you on the Day of Judgment. That also would’ve been adl; that would’ve also been fair. But, Allah (swt) said, no – Yes, I have done all that but you are not alone. Allah (swt) said in the Quran:

وَهُوَ مَعَكُمْ أَيْنَ مَا كُنتُمْ

and He is with you wherever you are [57:4]

You are always in the company of Allah and Allah (swt) is always your Companion.

Now, if you have ever travelled in this world you will see that one thing is to make a journey alone and one thing is to have a companion – you will see it’s a world of a difference. So, can you imagine Allah (swt) who has given us the gift of His ma’eeyat that He is our Companion in this world. That He is our Companion in Hayat-ud-Dunya – His ma’eeyat; His Qurb; His Aqrabeeyat

نَحْنُ أَقْرَبُ

“We are most near…”  (50:16)

that means He is most near to you

I’m your Companion; I’m near to you; I’m near-most to you! So, we were supposed to make it two-ways that Ya Allah! Okay, I also feel all the time that I’m in Your company. I also make myself feel Qareeb to You, Your Hukm; Your Command; Your Will; Your Wish; Your Ridaa; Your Pleasure – You said You are aqrab to me – well, I will be aqrab to Deen; I will be aqrab to Sunnah; I will be aqrab to Your Raza! So actually, all of Deen is to make this one-way love Allah (swt) has for us – to make it two-way!

To become the true, loyal, loving, obedient servant and slave and obedient lover of Allah (swt) – that Allah (swt) Who already loves us. Many people, they think that becoming the mehboob of Allah (swt) is the end the intehaa of Deen – being the Mehboob of Allah (swt) is the beginning of Deen. Allah (swt) Says in Quran:

يُحِبُّهُمْ وَيُحِبُّونَهُ

يُحِبُّهُمْ -Allah (swt) Loves them,

وَيُحِبُّونَهُ they love Allah

 

Allah (swt) could’ve Said yuhibboonahu wa yuhibbuhum that they love Allah and Allah loves them but no, when it comes to work – you do work first:

وَالَّذِينَ جَاهَدُوا فِينَا لَنَهْدِيَنَّهُمْ سُبُلَنَا ۚ وَإِنَّ اللَّـهَ لَمَعَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ

And those who strive for Us – We will surely guide them to Our ways. And indeed, Allah is with the doers of good. [Surah Ankaboot: 69]

You will strive in our path; We will Send hidaya to you.

 

فَاذْكُرُونِي أَذْكُرْكُمْ

Remember Me, I will remember you. [2:152]

You will make zikr of Me, Allah (swt) Says I will Make Zikr of you.

 

رَاضِيَةً مَّرْضِيَّةً

“…well-pleased and pleasing [to Him].” [89:28]

 You will be pleased with me then Allah will be Pleased with you.

 

But, when it came to love Allah (swt) Changed the order in Qur’an. Here when He Wanted to Mention His love He said,

يُحِبُّهُمْ وَيُحِبُّونَهُ

…a people He will love and who will love Him … [5:54]

 

Allah (swt) Loves them first and they love Allah (swt) second.

Means just by – and it’s so simple to understand – do you think we would have this Iman if we were not mehboob of Allah (swt)? Is it not, this itself, the greatest act of love that Allah (swt) Gave us iman! What did me and you do to earn this iman? We were not mustahiq of this iman – just Gracing us – this is called tawfeeq; His Fazl; Karam; Inaya  – and Allah (swt) Said exactly that in Quran:

Allah (swt) is the Wali of those who believe – now, you will see in so many places in Quran, Allah (swt) Says:

 

الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ

those who believe and do righteous deeds [2:25]

 Magar jab Allah (swt) apni dosti ka tazkara; apni muhabbat ka tazkara fermana chahein to amal ka shart chor dia. When Allah (swt) Wanted to Mention His Love, He didn’t Make that the condition that to have iman and do good deeds –a’amaal-us-Salih-Allah (swt) becomes their Friend, No!

 

اللَّـهُ وَلِيُّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا

Allah is the ally of those who believe [2:257]

 Allah is the Wali of those who have iman – in fact immediately after that Allah (swt) Made it clear that they are not doing amal-us-Saalihaat, they are doing zulumaat

يُخْرِجُهُم مِّنَ الظُّلُمَاتِ إِلَى النُّورِ

He brings them out from darknesses into the light. [2:257]

 Allah (swt) Takes them out! They are in darkness but they have iman – they are in sin, but they have iman; they are in depression, but they have iman they are lazy but they have iman, they are astray but they have iman!

  • اللَّـهُ وَلِيُّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا

Allah (swt) is their Wali

  • يُخْرِجُهُم

Allah (swt) will Take them out

  • مِّنَ الظُّلُمَاتِ

Plural; from so many darknesses into

  •  إِلَى النُّورِ

The Noor of His hidaya; the noor of Taqwa; the noor of His Muhabbah; the noor of His Qubooliyyah

  • Just on الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا ! –  what incredible fazl it is that we have this iman.

 

Allah (swt)’s Hidayat

Allah (swt) Said in Quran:

وَمَن يُؤْمِن بِاللَّـهِ يَهْدِ قَلْبَهُ

“And whoever believes in Allah – He will guide his heart.” [64:11]

 

That whoever has iman in Allah, Allah (swt) Himself, directly, personally Sends hidaya on to their Qalb – Direct!

Al-Hadi: Allah (swt) is Always Sending hidaya. You and me don’t realize this; we don’t really understand Qur’an – it literally means every single second that you have iman, even if you have one faint drop of iman! Allah (swt) is Always Sending His hidya on our heart! All the time! 24 hours – all the time. Just like today they have the signals. Right now in this room, signals are on all the time; so many radio channels and signals are present in the air; the waves are there all the time so it’s easy to understand. Allah (swt) sends the waves of His Hidayah on the spiritual heart of a person. Here also, Allah (swt) didn’t make any other condition, Allah (swt) didn’t say: “Mann Yu’min Billahi Wa Amala Amalan Sualihan”. No. He said:

 

وَمَن يُؤْمِن بِاللَّـهِ يَهْدِ قَلْبَهُ

“And whoever believes in Allah – He will guide his heart.” [64:11]

 

Just they had Imaan, That’s it. Allah (swt) sends Hidayah on their hearts. This is also a type of Zikr. You should just walk around all the time, trying to remember this. Remind your heart about Allah (swt), remind your heart that Allah (swt) is sending Hidayah in my heart. Put the receiver on; and the transmitter is always on. Keep it on! Feel this Hidayah, it is coming all the time.

 

وَكَانَ بِالْمُؤْمِنِينَ رَحِيمًا

“And ever is He, to the believers, Merciful.” [33:43]

 

Allah (swt)’s mercy is coming all the time, Allah (swt)’s Fazal, Karam is coming all the time on every single heart. Literally, you can imagine that people have those red laser-lights and they have targeted laser-light like heat seeking. Just like that, imagine that on every Qalb of every person in this Masjid right now, a light is coming. That is exactly what’s happening. Every single one of us gets this Noor of Hidayah all the time.

Now can you imagine, after all of that, still a person says: I don’t feel qareeb to Allah SWT. I feel baeed, I feel distant from Allah SWT.

 

They have a saying in English that: “If ever you feel distant from another party, in any relationship, there’s only one of two possibilities: either that party pulled back from you or you pulled back from them.”

 

Allah (swt) said:

فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ

 “…indeed I am near.” [2:186]

 

He made it clear. Oh My believers, I will never pull back from you. So it means that if we ever feel distant from Allah (swt), it’s because we pulled back from Him. Either we pull back through sin, or we pull back through Ghaflah. Allah (swt) tries to send us Hidayah:

 

وَذَرُوا ظَاهِرَ الْإِثْمِ وَبَاطِنَهُ

And leave what is apparent of sin and what is concealed thereof.” [6:120]

 

Leave all the sins that you do. Outward sin, inward sin, stop doing sin, stop desiring sin, stop wanting sin, stop being tempted by sin, stop being attracted to sin:

“وَذَرُوا ظَاهِرَ الْإِثْمِ وَبَاطِنَهُ”

Then Allah SWT also told us to stay away from Ghaflah.

 

وَلَا تَكُن مِّنَ الْغَافِلِينَ

“And do not be among the heedless.” [7:205]

 

Don’t you dare ever let yourself become amongst those people who forget Allah (swt), who neglect Allah (swt), who even spend one second of their lives empty of Zikr:“وَلَا تَكُن مِّنَ الْغَافِلِينَ”.

 

What is Ghaflah?

This is Hidayah. Allah (swt) is trying to guide us away from these two major things: our sins and our Ghaflah. And most us we keep slipping in sin and almost all of us slip in Ghaflah. Ghaflah doesn’t mean Haraam, Ghaflah means Halaal. Halaal recreation, Halaal entertainment, Halaal leisure, Halaal pleasure but which has no connection to Allah (swt) at all. This is also in Qur’an, laghw”. Allah SWT talks in the Qur’an about which believers are successful:

قَدْ أَفْلَحَ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ

“Certainly will the believers have succeeded.” [23:1]

Which believers are successful?

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ عَنِ اللَّغْوِ مُعْرِضُونَ

“And they who turn away from ill speech.” [23:3]

 That they turn away from this. They have no time for these things.

 

Purpose of Life: Pleasing Allah (SWT)

Again:

“Baamaqsad, Baamaqsood”

 

If they live a purposeful life, keeping in mind that their goal is to please Allah SWT, they will get that goal. They will become pleasing to Allah (swt). Yes, that’s what Allah SWT has said, that’s what you get:

رَاضِيَةً مَّرْضِيَّةً

                       “…well-pleased and pleasing [to Him].” [89:28]

 

The whole purpose of life is to get this pleasure

Allah (swt) says in Qur’an:

وَرِضْوَانٌ مِّنَ اللَّـهِ أَكْبَرُ

(9:72) 

“…but approval from Allah is greater.” [9:72]

That getting this pleasure from Allah (swt) is the single greatest thing in Jannah. The greatest thing in Jannah. It means, U’lama wrote, that even greater than seeing Allah (swt), even greater than Ro’yat-e-Baari-(swt), the joy the person in Jannah will have when Allah (swt) tells them, I am pleased with you, and I will be pleased with you forever. The joy they get in their hearts when they learn that Allah (swt) is pleased with them,

وَرِضْوَانٌ مِّنَ اللَّـهِ أَكْبَرُ

is even greater than the joy they get in their hearts when they get to see Allah (swt)’s beauty.

That’s how happy they will be. This is why Sahaba Karaam RA were so great. Allah (swt) gave them this joy in this world:

رَّضِيَ اللَّـهُ عَنْهُمْ وَرَضُوا عَنْهُ

(5:119)

 

For them also the order was changed. For Nafs-e-Mutmainnah:

  • Raaziyatan, first you please Allah SWT
  • Marziyyah, Allah SWT is pleased with you.

But for Sahaba-e-Karaam RA:

  • RazaiAllahu Ahum, Allah SWT is pleased with them first
  • Wa Razuu Anh, and they are also pleased with Allah SWT.

All these things I am mentioning to you, becoming pleasing to Allah (swt), feeling Qareeb to Allah (swt), remembering the Maiyyat, companionship of Allah SWT, all of these things are missing in our lives. That’s why you feel distant, that’s why we feel baeed from Allah SWT.

One Urdu poet used to say:

 “Allah se doori kaisi, 

Allah se ghaflat kaisi”

How can you live a life like that, that you are distant from Allah SWT? How can you pray a Salah like that, that you don’t feel the Qurb of Allah (swt)? Allah SWT says in the Qur’an, make sajdah and you will get Qurb. You make sajdah and you get Qurb, very simple. One step! All you have to do to get Qurb is one step: you make sajdah.

You and me make dozens of sajdahs, dozens. Dozens of sajdahs, and we say we don’t feel the Qurb of Allah SWT. So it means something is wrong somewhere. This has to get fixed. It’s not going to fix itself on its own. It’s been going on for years. Allah SWT sent Ramadan to fix us, how did Ramadan fix us? Ramadan made us feel that Qurb by making us feel two feelings:

First Feeling We Got in Ramadan: Love for Allah (swt)

In Ramadan a person starts loving Allah (swt). Although technically, Allah (swt) was making us do something difficult. In the UK, you fast for 18 hours and stay away from food and drink. It was difficult. But strangely, you started loving Allah (swt) more. You were happy to do it. This is called love. Love means you are happy to please and obey your Beloved. This is what Shaytaan didn’t have.

 

Shaykh Ashraf Ali Thanvi (RA) wrote that Iblees was an Aabid, Aalim and Aarif but he wasn’t an Aashiq. He didn’t love Allah (swt) so he didn’t love pleasing Allah (swt). He thought, “Should I make Sajda or not?” A lover doesn’t think that.

 

We did this in Ramadan. None of us thought, “Should I fast or not?” “Am I healthy or not?” We didn’t think.

 

سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا

…We hear and we obey… [Surah Al Baqara: 285]

 

We had this Sift of the Sahaba e Karaam (RA) during Ramadan. We too heard and obeyed! We didn’t think at all. We said, “Allah (swt), you want us to fast. I will fast.” So actually, this was love.

The Arabs say,

المحب لمن احب مطيع 

 The lover obeys his beloved.

 

Second Aspect of Love:
You can never betray your beloved.

You cannot even imagine betraying your beloved. The same thing happened to us. During Ramadan this summer, at Zuhr time, when you made Wudhu, there was water in your mouth. You could have swallowed a small amount and no one would have ever known! But you weren’t even tempted. It didn’t even cross the wildest range of your imagination that I should take a sip. Why? Because you were a lover of Allah (swt). This is called love; even though you had the opportunities to sin, you didn’t. Even though it was right in your grasp and no one would have ever known, you were not tempted even slightly.

 

The Same Principle After Ramadan

What does this mean then? You have a 24-hours access to sin. You can do it secretly and no one will come to know. You can talk to and look at non-Mehrams and sin, but you have to be the same way you were during Ramadan. “I am not interested, or tempted.” You live in a society in which you can misdirect your gaze anytime you want, but you have to be the way you were in Ramadan. You cannot be interested because you are the lover of Allah (swt). The same way we got Qurb towards Allah (swt) in Ramadan is the same way we will feel close now. It wasn’t the fasting. It was the love for Allah (swt). It was the love behind the fasting. Ramadan is the month in which we get the feeling of love by fasting. Afterwards, you’re supposed to keep the feeling without the fasting. Our problem is that we leave the feeling the second we leave the fasting. That was wrong.

 

The fasting was just a Sabab and Zaryaa.

 

لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ

…so that you may become righteous. [Surah Al Baqarah: 183]

Allah (swt) didn’t say, “so that you become hungry.” He said it’s so that you get Taqwa, Qurb and Love for Allah (swt).

Second Feeling We Got in Ramadan: Dhikr

Every second we were fasting, we were aware of our fast. Whether you were working, driving or sitting in an intense meeting, if you were asked if you were fasting, you would say yes. You would say I am aware that I am fasting in every second that goes by. In other words, I am aware that I am fasting for Allah (swt). Therefore, you’re in a state of Dhikr.

 Love + Dhikr = Qurb

Love for Allah (swt) and DhikrUllah grant a person Qurb of Allah (swt). They make a person feel close to Allah (swt).

But. It’s not always going to be Ramadan. So if a person slips and goes back into sin and ghaflat, there’s a process in our Deen called Tazkiya. This refers to:

  • Purifying our heart from sin
  • Occupying our heart in Dhikr
  • Staying away from Ghaflat
  • Feeingl love for Allah (swt)
  • Making Dhikr of Allah (swt)
  • Getting that feeling of Qurb back in your life.

Getting this Qurb, being the Muqarrab and beloved of Allah (swt) is the true dream of the believer.

Sunnah Model of Tazkiya

Mashaa’ikh teach Tazkiya, as did Nabi e Kareem (sws). Allah (swt) told him:

 يَتْلُو عَلَيْهِمْ آيَاتِهِ وَيُزَكِّيهِمْ وَيُعَلِّمُهُمُ الْكِتَابَ وَالْحِكْمَةَ

Reciting to them His verses and purifying them and teaching them the Book and wisdom [Surah Ale Imran: 164]

Even though he was around the Sahaba e Karaam (RA), it wasn’t enough to recite the Aayaat. The Prophet (sws) was told to imprint this Quran on their heart, and purify them from Ghaflah, and train them. This is the Sunnah model of Tazkiyya, and has been continuing down. It is the second work of Nabuwwah. The first was Tilawah. Second was Tazkiyya. Third was Taleem. Fourth was Hikmat. This work of Tazkiyya is part of our Deen. It is part of the prescription of the Quran and Sunnah of the Prophet (sws). If we find ourselves in sin and Ghaflah, we need to learn and practice this Tazkiyya. We should sit with and listen to Mashaaikh and their bayans, and read their books, to get the Love for Allah (swt) and the Prophet (sws) in our hearts. Then we ask them to teach us and guide us in Dhikr and then help us feel that Dhikr.

 Our Deen (like all relationships) is about feelings

One thing is to make the Dhikr with your tongue and one thing is to make it with your heart. Our deen is about feelings. Look in ever relationship you want to have a heart felt relationship how would you like to have a heartless relationship; that your son is heartless with you, your spouse is heartless with you, your friend is heartless with you, your neighbor is heartless with you. This is not a relationship.  Relationship is heartfelt, that there would be feelings, so the most important relationship is the Abd-Rab relationship. Our relationship with Allah (swt) is one that has to become a heartfelt relationship. So the Mashaa’ikh of Tazkiya teach us how to bring the heart back into deen. They teach us how to get the feelings of Deen. So there are the words of Deen: ‘alfaaz’. There are the meanings of Deen, that’s Ilm and then there are feelings of Deen, that’s called Tazkiya. Like Allah (swt) said in Quran,

الرَّحْمَـٰنُ فَاسْأَلْ بِهِ خَبِيرًا

…so ask about Him one well informed. [Surah Furqan: 59]

Ar Rehman! He teaches us His name that He is Ar Rehman. We know the meaning of Rehman that Allah swt is All Merciful, but if you want to know in your heart how should that make me feel, that Allah (swt) is Ar Rehman, فَاسْأَلْ!  You must go and ask someone. you can’t read and research this on your own. Allah (swt) gives command, خَبِيرًا  بِهِ فَاسْأَلْ that there are some people who are ‘khabeer’, who are deeply aware and informed, who know it very well, they know what it means that Allah (swt) is Ar Rehman. So you have to find them, you have to sit with them, you have to ask them, and you have to present your hearts, talk to them that I pray salah but I don’t feel it. I can’t control my gaze, I don’t remember Allah swt at work, I can’t control my tongue, I have a problem with anger.

Just like you have any physical illness you go to the doctor and tell him yourself that these are my symptoms, these are my pains, these are my problems, these are my difficulties and the doctors job is to give you prescription to work with you, to give you curing program, just like that the teachers of Tazkiya are like the spiritual doctors of the Ummah. When you go to them and tell them the difficulty you are having, it’s their duty to help and guide you. To get this Taqwa, to get the Qurb of Allah (swt) back, all of that is called Tazkiya.

May Allah swt accept us for every branch of Deen, for every reality of Deen. May He put the true feelings of true Mu’mineen in our heart. May He soften our heart and fill our heart with the love for Him and take out all the unlawful love of non-Mehram, unlawful love for Dunya, unlawful love for our self and put in our heart love for Allah (swt), love for Quran, love for Deen e Islam, love for the Prophet (sws), and fill our heart with Dhikr and take us out of ghaflah. May Allah swt accept us for this path of Tazkiya.

This entry was posted in Acquiring Sacred Knowledge ['ilm], Dhikr, Essentials of Deen, Ghaflah, Loving Allah swt, Post Ramadan Talks, Qurb of Allah swt, Taqwa, Tasawwuf Essentials, Wilayah and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Treasuring the Noor of Allah swt

  1. Please correct the translation of 2:257. ‘He brings them out of darkness into light’.JazakAllah.

  2. S.S. says:

    I did not read the entire article/transcription yet, but I just wanted to let you know that I spotted a couple mistakes in the translations of the ayahs. There was also a typo in the actual Arabic of one ayah. So I think it would be a good idea to revise this post, Insha’Allah. If you have trouble spotting the mistakes you can contact me and I will let you know where they are, Insha’Allah.

  3. S.S. says:

    Also, “that means” is not part of the translation of ayah 50:16.

    There is also a typo in the Arabic of the “Allahu waliyyulladheena aamanoo” ayah in one of the places.

  4. Natrah says:

    Thank you for taking time to write all this! May Allah bless and redha with every effort spent for His deen! 😀

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